Romance: the sweet scent of flowers, the gentle glow of candlelight, couples swaying to soft music, and a whispered, “I love you.” Valentine’s Day is next Monday, and spring isn’t far behind it. In fact, the weather we’re having in the San Francisco Bay Area already feels like the season of love.
But some of us have a touch of snow on our roofs — due to midlife hormone changes, the rest of our bodies don’t always respond the way we want when roses bloom in our hearts. I’m here with good news: taking great care of your body will help you to get the amorous results you desire.
Your sexual readiness is heavily influenced by what you eat and whether or not you exercise. If you pay careful attention to these areas of your health, you can have a lively time on Valentine’s Day, and be healthier over all.
As many of you know, I offer free strategy sessions for new clients. I offer this in order to provide tailor-made advice. But in honor of love, I’d also like to give you these general recommendations right now:
1. Eat enough protein. Many people don’t, and this leaves them flagging. The mid-afternoon lull that most people experience on a day-to-day basis is often related to a need for more of this body-building nutrient. Good sources are eggs, dairy, nuts, beans (especially eaten with whole grains), lean poultry, and lean meats.
2. Get plenty of vitamins and minerals. We need them so much for overall health that I recommend that my clients take a multivitamin every day. For the libido, vitamins C and E are especially important. Iron plays a key role in keeping our energy up, and zinc is another love-friendly mineral. For good food sources of C, E, and iron, check out this page on the USDA web site http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document/html/appendixb.htm And for zinc, eat oysters–perhaps this is why they have such an amorous reputation–fortified cereals, baked beans, crab, lamb, and lean beef.
3. Be good to your arteries. You need them–both men and women–for good blood flow as your heart starts to race. Avoid saturated fats such as fatty meats and hydrogenated oils, both of which clog the arteries. And stay away from nicotine, which hardens them.
4. Imbibe in moderation. Wine and champagne may be great ways to relax and get in the mood, but too much is bad for the actual–how shall I put this?–execution. Furthermore, over time alcohol interferes with sleep, leading to fatigue and depression. So a glass or two of your favorite red or bubbly is o.k. But other than that, use the tried-and-true techniques of virtuoso lovers to set the mood: gaze into your beloved’s eyes, recount memories from your shared love story, and tell your partner why they are your very special Valentine.
5. Balance your blood sugar for steady energy. Refined flours and sugars can give us a quick pick up when we’re feeling down, but then we crash. And they also increase our risk of developing diabetes. While this condition is bad enough in and of itself, for men, it can be disastrous for the libido. That’s because diabetes causes their bodies to transform testosterone into estrogen. So for consistent energy, swear off sugar as much as possible, reduce refined flours, and eat more legumes, dairy products, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
6. Get physical. Just as you would train for a big hike, a road race, or any other demanding physical activity, you can get yourself in shape for love. Cardiovascular exercise juices up your endorphins, which is great for passion. Aerobic exercise benefits your heart and lungs, which strengthens stamina. And building muscle does wonders for increasing blood flow. So develop an exercise program that’s healthy for you in consultation with me or another health care professional. Then the next time you’re sweating through a workout, try what Arnold did to become Mr. Olympia: use your imagination to associate the challenges of your training with the pleasures of love.
If you would like more help, please let me know. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) offers effective, all-natural treatments that can help you to bring back the vitality of youth. I am available for free strategy sessions for new clients. It does my heart good to see old friends return, as well. Just get in touch via the “Contact” tab at the top of this page.
I hope these recommendations help you and your loved one have a wonderful time on Valentine’s Day. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. And it would be great to see comments below about your Valentine’s Day celebrations.
Best wishes for love and health.